Boston Celtics head coach Doc Rivers reacts after his team...

Boston Celtics head coach Doc Rivers reacts after his team missed a 2-point shot during the second half. (Oct. 30, 2012) Credit: AP

The way the Knicks defended Carmelo Anthony after Monday night's game, Doc Rivers came to Kevin Garnett's defense about the heated argument that carried over to the hallway outside the locker room and ultimately the Celtics' bus.

"He’s not going to back down, he’s not going to go anywhere,” Rivers told Boston reporters yesterday. “They know it and it bothers them. Kevin’s Kevin, and when you watch that tape Kevin did nothing wrong. He was into the game. He just played hard, he was defiant. He’s stubborn on defense, didn’t give you anything easy, and that’s how you’re supposed to play defense. Sometimes it bothers you.”

“Everybody talks,” said Rivers. “Everybody talks. I think that talking stuff is so overblown. Watch the game, and look at who’s doing more talking. All Kevin did was say something back. Talking is so overblown to me. Talking started, hell, before I was even playing. Larry Bird was one of the biggest trash talkers in the league.”

Rivers was asked about what happened at the bus.

"I’m not going to get into that part," he said. "That’s New York’s thing. I’m not going to get into that. I don’t pile on, and I’m not going to. I just went to security, and then I got on the bus.

"It’s not the first time it’s happened. It is an emotional game, but you need to leave it on the floor. We all would agree with that."

Newsday LogoDON'T MISS THIS LIMITED-TIME OFFER1 5 months for only $1Save on Unlimited Digital Access